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Thinking of driving around Australia but you’re dreading the moment your little one throws the mother of all tantrums, I can completely understand. But with a little preparation you can reduce (not stop) these moments and get to enjoy your trip. The hardest part about travelling with a toddler on a road trip is they are too small to see out any of the windows and get bored easily.
10 Road Trip Activities for Toddlers
Toddlers + hangry (hungry/angry) is the ultimate meltdown situation. Our daughters loved a lunch box with lots of little compartments. They would get so excited about all the different choices and treats for them to choose. The best part about it, it would take them a long time to demolish it and it kept them entertained for a long time rather than just giving them a sandwich. Make sure there are no choking hazards and also make it mess free (i.e no blueberries).
Recommended Product – Having a Car Storage Tray beside your Toddler is a great way of giving easy access to snacks and water. Plenty of space for some toys as well. It folds away for easy storage.
Make sure you pack your child’s favourite toy. This will be a great comforter for them especially when they are starting to feel a little tired.
The ultimate distraction! Yes, we all know that screen time should be kept to a minimum for our little ones but when you’re travelling in a car for long periods of time the DVD player will save your sanity. Remember to buy children’s headphones (as they reduce the sound for tiny ears) as this will save you from endless hours of Wiggles music that’s on repeat.
I don’t love the girls using an IPAD in the car as it encourages them to look down and stretches their neck. But there are some great attachment’s you can get for headrests to attach the IPAD too. But an IPAD is a great “Break it out in case of an emergency” moment. Some great apps to have is Playschool, paint art apps, music, lego building and any Disney app that they can watch.
Recommended Product – Save your child’s neck from looking down all day with a Tablet Holder.
Get creative and make a busy box for your young ones to be entertain. There are lots of great cheap toys and crafts you can find at your local cheap store. See our Busy box for Toddlers post on what we included.
I spy/Car Bingo
I spy is a fantastic way to keep the kids busy in the car. Our girls loved playing I spy with my “coloured” eye. So instead of something that begins with, we simply changed it to colours as it made it easy for them to participate. You can also find on the internet some great Car Bingo printable sheets.
Travel Board/Felt Boards
Create or purchase a felt board. These boards are great and easy to find in your local cheap shop or on Etsy. The kids can use their imagination to create some great pictures and the felt is easy to work with. We had a felt board with loads of different facial cutouts. The girls had hours of entertainment creating new and funny faces.
Etsy is a great website to buy some handmade travel boards and felt boards for toddlers. I have purchased from Etsy and recommend only purchasing in Australia.
Recommended Product- Don’t let your Toddler get frustrated by dropping all their things on the floor of the car. The lightweight Travel Tray has fantastic sides to stop your Toddlers toys falling to the floor.
Stickers are so entertaining for little kids. When our daughters were little we got lots of stickers for them to pull off and stick through a blank scrapbook. There are lots of sticker activity books that you can purchase however our daughters were too young to complete the activities. Just remember that some stickers may be stuck to random parts of the back of the car when they get tired of it. We did have a few get stuck to the windows 🙂
Magic Drawing Board
These are great fun for little ones and parents as they are mess free. Our daughters loved drawing and scribbling all over it and then in one swipe, it’s all cleaned off. These are really cheap items that you can easily get from Kmart.
When all else fails
Your toddler will have a day they just don’t want to be in the car seat! They hate every snack you offer them and their favourite toy just isn’t settling them. This is where we would break out the stash of “back up toys”. These are new toys we have grabbed from Kmart or the Dollar store just to distract them enough to calm them down. We had a little bag hidden behind the back seat of stuffed toys, cars, trucks, squishy ball etc. Simple to buy and usually helped with the Toddler meltdown.
Toddlers are a great age to travel with and there are lots of ways to try and reduces their meltdowns. Try to remember to include regular breaks from the car. We planned our lunch breaks around parks so they could run off some energy. We also installed some curtains in the back of the car to keep them cool and also make it darker for nap time.
We hope that our Top 10 Road Trip Activities for Toddlers has helped you and please don’t hesitate to travel Australia with your toddler. Just be prepared for the chaos and fun 😉
Some more awesome products
To protect your child against UV Rays from the sun with this fantastic window tint. It provides them with shade and doesn’t restrict window usage. Variety of patterns.
My Buddy Tag
We wish we had this amazing little device for both of our girls. Toddlers are fast and tend to wander off. My Buddy Tag has an out of range alarm, water safety feature, and personal ID Tag. Fantastic safety product for extra piece of mind.